By Alex Comstock
For a large majority of us, we indulge deer hunting information through a variety of mediums non-stop. Reading magazine articles, books, online blogs, watching TV and online shows, listening to podcasts, it never ends. Every topic under the sun about hunting mature bucks has at some point been written about, or covered through video. If you really want to go out and harvest mature bucks consistently, there is plenty of information to soak up and apply. So that naturally brings me to the next question. Why don't more people harvest truly mature bucks on a consistent, yearly basis? There is a long winded answer, containing all kind of elements, but with that said, there is ONE thing that everybody can do, but not everybody ACTUALLY does it.
DO WHAT YOU KNOW YOU'RE SUPPOSE TO DO.
There you go. Mind blown right? Right now you could be thinking, "Really? That's the single most important piece of advice this guy has? Waste of thirty seconds of my life." But just wait a second, and think about it. How many times have you known in your gut that you should go that long round a bout way to get to your treestand to avoid bumping deer, but instead take the short route, and bust a buck out of his bed? Or how about that time you knew the wind wasn't right for your best treestand, but you love that spot so much you sat it anyway, and got winded by a doe that snorted all night, and ruined your hunt.
It all boils down to doing what you know you need to do. Guys that do harvest mature bucks year after year don't have a big buck secret that nobody knows about. There's a couple things that differentiate them from everybody else, and that's hard work and attention to detail. It takes a tremendous amount of hard work to shoot a mature buck. Not only do you have to do everything to figure one out, and get in position, you then have to get that buck in the right spot, and send an arrow through him in just the right spot. The guys/gals that put in a great amount of hard work, and go about executing every little detail right, are the ones who are the most successful.
DO IT: You know in your gut what you've got to do to give yourself the best chance of putting down a mature buck, but are you willing to actually do it? Nobody really wants to walk down that round a bout creek ditch for a mile to access a stand, it would be light years easier to walk down the field edge right? But, if taking that creek means avoiding bumping a bedded buck, or keeping your ground scent away from the majority of deer movement, it can be the difference in success or failure. The point I'm getting at here is there are things similar to this given situation that goes on all year. Whether it be in the spring when you could be out scouting buck bedding areas, but you decide to stay home, or in the summer when you could be figuring out a buck's feeding area, there are times all year where you can be going that extra mile. You know what you should be doing, the question is, are you?
The same goes with attention to detail. The littlest of things can make the biggest difference in your levels of success and failure. Paying attention to wind, the way in which you walk in to a stand (noise levels, etc.) checking cameras on the right day, they all play a factor in whether or not you harvest a mature buck. It can be extremely hard to wait until the right wind to check your trail camera you have up near a buck's bedding area. If you go in anyway with the wrong wind, you could check that camera, and blow that buck out of there without even knowing it. Doing the small things right, can pay huge dividends.
Conclusion: Like I said earlier, you know what you have to do to give yourself the best chance possible to harvest a mature buck. Even for new hunters, the resources out there are endless. There are no secrets to success. It's out there on the table, and if you want it, you've got to take it. Be smart, and do what you know you should do, and see the results for yourself. It doesn't mean every hunt is going to end with a big buck, but by doing the small things right and working hard, only good things can happen.